OB7.2 GFE Changes for Forecasters
Last Updated 2/12/07
National Weather Service
Office of Climate, Water, and Weather Services
Changes for Tropical Operations
New VTEC Phenomena Added
Product Editor Changes
FWS Formatter Enhancements
UFN Entries in the GHG Monitor
Alert Banner Messages
|The GFE Practice Mode has been enhanced to make it easy for the forecaster to clear the grids and VTEC table. Two new options have been added to the GFE Practice Mode. A new main menu entry called Reset Practice has been added. The menu provides direct access to resetting (clearing) the VTEC active table for PRACTICE events, and to clear all grids from the Prac_Fcst database. These changes will facilitate training and testing in Practice mode.|
|Additional Call To Action statements were added for the tropical events. The series of new statements are broken down by wind speed. These statements have been added for Inland Tropical Storm and Inland Hurricane. This was an action item from the NWS NOAA Hurricane Conference in late 2005.|
| Beginning in the 2007 Hurricane season, the
TCV issued by TPC will only contain
coastal zones for tropical events. This is a significant
change to previous years, where the TCV contained marine zones and coastal
counties. The WFO is now responsible for entering
tropical hazards for the marine zones as well as inland tropical hazards
for inland zones.
The PlotTCVEvents and HazardRecovery tools have been changed to accomondate the new paradigm. The MakeHazard Tool will be changed in the 7.2 Maintenence Release, currently scheduled for March.
- PlotTCVEvents will leave existing tropical hazards in the grids for the marine zones, but will replace any tropical hazards (not inland tropical hazards) for coastal zones to that depicted in the TCV.
- HazardRecovery will restore your hazard grids based on what the WFOs have issued and what is depicted within the TCV.
- MakeHazard will have separate categories for Inland Tropical (HI and TI phenomena), Tropical Cyclone (HU and TR phenomena), and Typhoon (TY). The Tropical Cyclone will now only show the Marine Zone map.
- The VTEC Event Tracking Numbers for WFO-created HU and TR hazards are no longer synchronized with the TCV coastal zones Event Tracking Number.
There will be a training module on all of the changes to tropical operations coming in April.
| Hard Freeze
(HZ) has been added as a new VTEC phenomena. Watches and
Warnings can now be created in the Hazard grid for inclusion in the
AFD, ZFP (AreaFcst), NPW, and AFM/PFM.
The MakeHazard procedure has had these two entries added to the Non-Precipitation category. The MergeHazard procedure has been modified to detect the conflict between HZ (Hard Freeze), FZ (Freeze), and FR (Frost).
Until all sites have this version of the software, there is the possibility of ISC grids containing these new values being rejected by the receiving site since older sites will not be able to validate these codes.
| Some sites were using Save File and Open File to
save an intermediate draft to allow multiple forecasters to edit a product
in sequence. This had adverse effects since the product definition is
not carried with the saved text. When the product was loaded back into
the editor, the segment expiration times were incorrectly adjusted due
to missing product definition information. To correct this situation,
a new Save Draft and Load Draft capability
has been added to the Product Editor.
A Save Draft button has been added to the Product Editor (and the Save... and Store... buttons removed). Save Draft saves a copy of the current text in the editor along with the product definition to the ifpServer TEXT/DRAFT directory. Loading a draft is accomplished by Products -> XXX to create the product pane, just like getting ready to run the formatter. Then pressing a Load Draft button which immediately loads the draft text (and product definition) into the product pane. The product can be edited and then transmitted.
The Save... to a file and Store... to the AWIPS database capabilities still exist, but only as menu entries and no longer as buttons.
|The Call To Actions file format has changed to allow descriptive words along with the call to action text. If the descriptive words are provided, then the Call To Action Dialog will display the descriptive words instead of the call to action text.|
| The headline order for non-marine
products has been changed. Previously headlines reflecting
Expirations or Cancellations would appear first. The new algorithm has
the Expirations and Cancellations appearing last. The algorithm first
lists active (NEW, EXB, EXA, EXT, ROU, CON) headlines first, sorted
chronological by starting time, sorted by action code (NEW, EXB, EXA,
EXT, ROU, CON), sorted by significance (Warning, Advisory, then Watch),
sorted by VTEC phenomena code (alphabetically). The algorithm lists
non-active (EXP, CAN, UPG) headlines next, sorted chronological by starting
time, sorted by action code (EXP, CAN, UPG), sorted by significance
(Warning, Advisory, then Watch), sorted by VTEC phenomena code (alphabetically).
Note that this change also affects the order of the body elements of the FFA (Flash Flood) product as the order of the body elements within each segment mirror the headline order.
| The algorithm to compute expiration time on a segment
in the GFE was modified to handle multiple active events. Now
the expiration time will be set to the soonest of the latest ending
time of all active hazards and the spinbox. Cancel or expire
events by themselves in a segment result in a one-hour expiration time.
Previously if there were more than one active event, the segment expiration
time would be set to the earliest ending time of the active events.
For example, if you have a WI.Y which just expired, a FG.Y valid for 7 hours, and a HW.A which ends in 32 hours, and your spinbox is set to 8 hours, the product expiration time of this segment will be in 8 hours. Previously, the product expiration time would have been 7 hours. This change should result in fewer required updates and orphaned products.
|Previously the type field (corrected, amended, delayed, etc.) would only be seen in the "Type" selector at the bottom of the editor. With this change, the current "Type" (e.g. CCA) will also appear on the first line of the product once a type has been selected.|
|The ability to enter a start date and time of the forecast has been added. This allows forecasters to fill spot forecast requests needed for Day 3 and beyond and the forecast's first period will match the start date/time entered.|
| Offices participating in the RiverPro VTEC test who
have issued, or those who border WFOs who have issued, River flood warnings
with an Until Further Notice (UFN) VTEC ending times have seen those
events remain in the GHGMonitor (and VTECTable).
The problem was the relationship between product
issued with one PIL (FLW) and followed up with another PIL (FLS).
VTECDecoder would not relate these two records due to the different
PILs. GFE was changed to understand this relationship. As such, the
"Include OrgPil Events" display filter option has been removed from
the GHGMonitor since that capability is now in the software.
|The yellow and red alert banners in the GFE could clip some of the characters if the message was long. The alert dialog now resizes and word wraps correctly to ensure that the entire message is always displayed.|
|The ViewWCL procedure now works properly if it can't find any data within six hours of the present time. Previously the procedure would abort with a traceback.|
|The format of the MAFOR in the GLF is incorrect when an admendment is issued. The MAFOR line should be something like: MAFOR 2413/ AMD and it simply comes out like the original line: MAFOR 2409/ without the AMD and without the updated time.|
|MAFOR in GLF: Headlines in the MAFOR are coded based on wind speed only, not actually what has been issued. The SV.A headline is not currently coded at all in the MAFOR section.|
|The Product Editor Undo/Redo feature has been temporarily disabled for technical and development schedule reasons.|
|The Product Editor word wrap does not work for the headlines. The user needs to handle the headline wrapping manually. Also, the forecaster must add in the new line appropriately. If the forecaster adds a new line, but then decides to remove the line, the trailing three dots (...) will stay on the subsequent line rather than moving to the end of the 1st headline line.|
|The product editor spell checker does not spell check words adjacent to an ellipsis (...). This has been seen to occur when the misspelled word occurs after the ellipsis, but may occur for words before the ellipsis. For example, the spell checker will *NOT* flag as an error the following: .TODAY...PARLTY CLOUDY. This appears to be an intermitten problem.|
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